Cooking food recipes


OK, so first off, I LOVE these shots! They are tasty, have alcohol in them, look super cool and are the PERFECT item to bring to a potluck. Sure, everyone loves a good spinach dip but what they really want is a colourful shot made with Jello and vodka.

In an effort not to mislead anyone, these are not an ‘oh shit I forgot to make something for the potluck tomorrow, lemme whip up a batch of these’ type of potluck item. No. These take time. Usually I’ll start making them three days out, doing a colour a day until the party. I have done a colour one night, one the next morning, one that evening, giving the total time just a day and a half but that’s because I was naive and wasn’t aware they were going to be a requested item at the party I was going to.

Along with making too much Irish Soda Bread and juggling yelling Spuddys, my next St. Patrick’s Day party contribution is 100% these shots. Every year.

Full disclosure, I once woke up the morning after a party and ate one for breakfast forgetting there was vodka in it. Hair of the dog right?!

Before we get started, if anyone needs an HR-friendly St. Patrick’s Day playlist, I made a great one on Spotify: #paddynotpatty – look me up!  


(Makes 40 shots)

1 packet of lime green Jello

1 packet of orange Jello

1 can of coconut milk (full fat, like why get healthy now?)

1 packet of gelatine

Vodka or Rum (a clear colourless alcohol works best) 

Step 1: 

Mix 1 cup of boiling water into the green jelly powder until dissolved. Stir slowly. You don’t want to stir too vigorously and create foam! Add 1/2 cup of cold water and 1/2 cup of vodka to the mixture. Carefully fill 1/3 of the shot glasses with the green jello mixture. 

Refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight until jello is set. 

Step 2: 

Make up one pouch of gelatine as directed on packet (usually it’s just mix with 1/2 of boiling water but maybe just make sure that’s what it says on the packet you bought). Then mix 1/2 cup of vodka and 3/4 of coconut milk into the gelatine. 

Carefully fill another 1/3 of the shot glasses with the white mixture. 

Return to fridge for another 3hrs or overnight until set. 

Step 3: 

Same as Step 1 but with orange instead of green! 

Mix 1 cup of boiling water into the orange jelly powder until dissolved. Stir slowly. You don’t want to stir too vigorously and create foam! Add 1/2 cup of cold water and 1/2 cup of vodka to the mixture. Carefully fill the last 1/3 of the shot glasses with the orange jello mixture. 

Return to fridge for another 3hrs or overnight until set. 


IRISH FLAG SHOTS and you’re the hit of the party! 

*You can also make these non-alcoholic by subbing water where ever you see ‘vodka’. 


Cooking food

Irish Soda Bread

Skip the bloggy part and SHOW ME THE RECIPE!

OK so this is, by far, the easiest recipe ever. It’s not fancy. It doesn’t involve a million ingredients. And it’s not at all gluten free, but let’s not hold that against it. Just because I can’t eat it anymore, doesn’t mean everyone else can’t eat it anymore. 

I make this yearly around St. Patrick’s Day. Usually several batches at a time. I take it to parties. I hand it out at my own party. I send people home from parties with it. I usually spend the day after the party emailing the recipe to curious people who spent the evening wondering how I made the bread from just 4 ingredients and 30 minutes of my evening. 

It’s the first thing I learned how to bake in Home Economics class when I was in secondary school in Dublin and one year I taught a group of youth from a community centre in Calgary how to bake it. I actually couldn’t remember how to make it as an adult and had to call upon my friend, who’s a primary school teacher back home, to explain it to me. I’m also not entirely sure if it was the first thing I learned how to bake or if it’s just the only thing I remember baking…except those milk drops…which we don’t speak of….because I dropped them all taking them out of the oven. 

I was so sad. 

Anyway, this is a simple, no fuss recipe that’s really hard to get wrong and I won’t bore you with more paragraphs to scroll past about the history of Irish Soda Bread. However if you are interested in the history of Irish Soda Bread, The Society for the Preservation of Irish Soda Bread has got a website for you! 

And yes, you can add raisins to the bread if you’re feeling extra fancy but then you’re veering into Tea Cake / Scone territory. 


#funfact: this recipe fits neatly on a Post-It note

3.5 cups all-purpose flour

1.5 cups buttermilk (plus more if needed)

3/4tsp baking soda

1tsp salt

Mix flour, salt and baking soda together. Form well in middle. Add buttermilk. Mix with a wooden spoon until juuuuust combined and still lumpy.

Turn out onto floured surface. Kneed for a few seconds, add a little buttermilk if needed.

Shape into a round and cut an X on it.

Bake at 425 for 30 minutes.

To test of it’s done, knock on the bottom of the loaf and if it sounds hollow, it is done. I recommend holding it upside down in an oven mitten cos it sounds easy tapping on the bottom of a loaf of bread fresh from the oven…but it is not. 

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11 Fun Facts About St. Patrick’s Day


1. St. Patrick was actually British. The Irish kidnapped him and forced him to work alone on a mountain as a shepherd. One day, he escaped and returned to Britain where he studied Christianity for many years. He later returned to Ireland to teach the small island about Christianity and spread the word of the Holy Trinity. 

2. He is widely believed to have gotten rid of all the snakes from Ireland.

3. Though now associated with the colour green, St. Patrick’s colour actually used to be blue. 

4. Until 1970, as it was declared a public holiday, no pub was allowed to open in Ireland on St. Patrick’s Day.

5. In 1903, the first St. Patrick’s Day parade took place in Ireland. 

6. It’s St. Paddy’s Day not St. Patty’s Day. Patty is a girl’s name. And the name of a hamburger. And something you would get decked for if you called a guy it in Ireland.

7. March 17th is the day of his death, not birth.

8. It was St. Patrick who granted permission to St. Brigid to allow women to propose to men on Feb 29th.

9. Other than also being Irish, leprechauns have nothing to do with St. Patrick’s Day. There is, however, a museum dedicated to them in Dublin. 

10. Despite many depictions to the contrary, the four-leaf clover also has nothing to do with St. Patrick’s Day. St. Patrick used the shamrock, with its three leaves, to explain the Holy Trinity to the people of Ireland and thus making it a constant symbol of Ireland. 

11. The shortest St. Patrick’s Day parade in the world happens in Dripsey, Co. Cork and travels between two of the town’s pubs.

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‘Oh, you’re Irish! Me too.’

St. Patrick's Day
St. Patrick’s Day (Photo credit: mdid)

It’s been maybe 9 and a half years since I last celebrated St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland and through travelling around this fine world, I’ve had this conversation too many times to count:

Someone: ‘Where are you from?’

Me: ‘Ireland.’

Someone: ‘Oh, you’re Irish! Me too.’

Me: ‘Really? What part of Ireland are you from?’

Someone: ‘Oh, I’ve never actually been to Ireland. My great-grandmother was Irish.’

Me: ‘So where in America are you from?’

There’s no day in the whole year that this conversation happens more than on March 17th….or the Saturday after if it falls on a weekday. There’s also the whole rigmarole of me also having to prove I’m Irish on occasion due the fact that six years in England and four in Korea has led to my accent being a bit askew. Also living with The Canadian One I pick up little bits of twang…although he doesn’t say ‘aboot’ or ‘ey’ nearly as much as I would have hoped.

Just while I’m on the subject of words said incorrectly differently, please please Americans (and all other people in the world who do it) stop calling it St. Patty’s Day. It’s St. Patrick’s Day, St. Paddy’s Day or just Paddy’s Day. Under NO circumstances should it be called St. Patty’s Day.


At all.

Paddy: Short for Patrick.

Patty: Short for Patricia, the name of Marge’s sister in The Simpsons and the name of a small, round serving of meat usually found on a burger. Can be used to cover everything from the dubious stuff that goes on a McDonald’s Cheeseburger to the gourmet homemade thingys The Canadian One makes.

If you don’t believe me, go to Ireland, call a fella ‘Patty’ and see what happens, I dare ya. It’s worth knowing, Ireland’s healthcare costs are astronomical so ye may wanna pick a guy you’ve got a fightin’ chance with.

St. Patrick
St. Patrick (Photo credit: Mark Sardella)

Moving on. Now, not a lot is known about old St. Paddy himself. What is known is that he wasn’t Irish. At all. Not one little bit. He’s British.

Just to recap our geography, before anyone writes and says, ‘it’s the saaaaame’, Britain = England, Scotland and Wales. Not Ireland.

St. Patrick, presumably back when he was just plain Patrick (or Paddy to his friends), at age sixteen was kidnapped by Irish raiders and brought to Ireland to work as a shepard. I kid you not, we properly snatched and grabbed him. Then we kept him for 6 years until he escaped and fled back to his family in Britain.

The story goes, as stories do, that while alone and secluded from other people working on the mountains in Ireland, God spoke to him. God told him he’d soon be free and it was time to leave Ireland. Upon his return to his homeland, he entered the church where he stayed for 15 years (approx, who really knows) and then he returned to Ireland. Seriously, he came back to the people that kidnapped him in the first place.

Now widely blamed for credited with bringing christianity to our small little island (was it really necessary?), we celebrate St. Patrick’s death in the form of drinking, parades with floats, green beer, dying our rivers green (with orange dye no less) and wearing silly hats. Do you think this is what he had in mind when he brought us religion? Floats and alcohol? One can only hope!

So where does the shamrock come into all this?

Well, St. Patrick used the shamrock (a three-leafed clover, NOT four, three…THREE) to explain the Holy Trinity to the people of Ireland and naturally, we adopted as our national flower.

Ah, tell me about the snakes.

Apparently St. Patrick, in his spare time between praying, talking to God, explaining the Holy Trinity to people and spreading the christian word, also got rid of all the snakes in Ireland. Every single one of them. No snakes in Ireland no more. And why? Cos St. Paddy got rid of them all. True story. Probably. Again, who really knows?

Leprechaun with rainbow
Leprechaun with rainbow (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And what about the leprechauns?

They don’t come into this story so we’ll have to deal with them in a different post.

For more information on St. Patrick, you should watch this mini film by Brown Bag Films (it’s only 4:30 mins long). Recorded in 1960, its young children in an inner city Dublin National School telling their versions of bible stories to a film crew. Hilarious, warming and Oscar-nominated, well worth four and a half minutes of your life.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day all, wear green and don’t drink too much!

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